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All That You Can't Leave Behind Album Information

New Album Info: General

General / Articles / Reviews / Singles / Videos / Booklet

Want to share your thoughts about the new album? Visit the U2 Forum and join the discussion.

1. Beautiful Day (4:06)

(U2, Bono)
(Will be the first single. U2.com says the song is about "a person who loses everything and has never been happier." The song was once called "Beautiful Day (Always)." "Always," one of the single's b-sides is based on the same chorus riff. Includes background vocals by Daniel Lanois, who also contributes some backup guitar work.)

Billboard.com's track description: "The project's lead single, 'Beautiful Day' is an instantly recognizable, immediately memorable U2 rocker -- replete with a big, booming chorus, lushly layered harmonies, and ringing guitar riffs. Lyrically, Bono says the song is about 'a person who loses everything and has never been happier. It's a song about taking stock of the important things in life.'"

Q magazine description: "Synth whirls, guitar glimmers, then chorus explodes with snare drums and Joshua Tree widescreen splendour. Bono reckons its about a man who loses everything and feels better. 'See the bird with the leaf in her mouth / After the flood all the colours come out' backs him up."

2. Stuck In A Moment You Can't Get Out Of (4:32)

(U2, Bono, Edge)
(Bono called it "just the most extraordinary song about a friend of mine who died." The friend he is refering to was the nanny for Bono and Ali's children before he died from cancer. Though some have speculated the song refers to Michael Hutchence of INXS, who died on November 22, 1997, Bono has said it is not. But it has been reported that Bono has used the phrase to answer reporters questions as to why he thought that Michael took his own life. Brian Eno has predicted that it will be one of U2's biggest songs ever.
"The song is about a friend of mine who's dead and it's a really unsentimental conversation with him", Bono said. The Irish Times calls it a "haunting, wholly compelling track". "It's like an incredible pop song but done by us and done our way, so it sounds like a U2 song but its incredibly melodic and also has this gospel aspect", explains The Edge. Rolling Stone magazine describes it as "a glorious rush of Philadelphia soul-in a gospel tune." The Edge wrote the "rudiments" of the song on a piano in a Japanese hotel room.)

Billboard.com's description: "A sweet, understated rock ballad that deftly explores the angst and
ultimate emotional rescue from depression and sadness. Bono glides into a smooth, gospel-inflected falsetto during the bridge, adding a retro-soul flavor to the tune. 'We wanted it to have a real Philly type of flow to it,' Bono says. 'Musically, it has that shuffle-in-the-street sound that feels so great and old-fashioned in the best possible way.'"

Q magazine description: "Theme of overcoming crisis ('this time will pass') and forging on established. Modern pop-soul sound an agreeable shock. Edge keeps it Steve Cropper simple. A keyboard rings out like a bell. Clayton and Mullen puntuate sparesely. Dusty Springfield in the house."

3. Elevation (3:46)

(U2, Bono)
(Will feature Larry Mullen on bass. The Irish Times calls it a "funky, improvised" track. "One of the twelve songs on the album is called Elevation and sounds like 'Get off my cloud' by the Rolling Stones," Bono says. The Edge describes it as having "an almost hip-hop groove". And he adds, "but being played by us, it doesn't sound like anything out there." Rolling Stone magazine calls it "a buzzing electro-rock song somewhere between T Rex and hip hop, over which bono half yelps, half raps -- "In a little while.").

Billboard.com's description: "An acidic kicker that's mildly reminiscent of the tripped-out tone of earlier albums 'Pop' and 'Achtung Baby,' in that it deftly intermingles forceful rock elements with jittery hip-hop-derived beats and a swirl of distorted guitar/keyboard lines."

Q magazine description: "Reminiscient of Achtung Baby's The Fly in its rock'n'roll funksomeness: also features staccato SexBono. Evil guitars like The Breeders' Cannonball. Sonar 'boink' enhances beneath-sea-level ambience. Brilliant. Euro house-style sound-galloping-in-from-the distance bit. Putative single."

4. Walk On (4:55)

Billboard.com's description: "A classic U2 love song, featuring meticulous, clanging guitar-work from the Edge and yearning, worldly words of love by Bono. Lines like 'A singing bird in an open cage / Who will only fly for freedom,' as well as the tune's arena-friendly chorus, render it a natural single contender. 'It's one of the songs that people seem to have an instantly positive response to,' Bono says. 'It's going to be a lot of fun to play live.'"

Q magazine description: "'Love is hard but what else have we got?' ponders Bono, sort of, incorporating shades of We Shall Overcome. 'A place has to be believed to be seen' is the very clever line. Edge bullied into playing poignant guitar solo. Graceful, noble, and leads aptly into ... "

5. Kite (4:23)

(U2, Bono)
(With this story offered by Bono:"There's a hill behind my house," he explained. "I took my two little girls up the hill to prove to them and myself I could be the perfect parent. I bought a large four foot by three foot kite - it lasted sixty seconds before it was taken out of my hands and crashed to the ground. The next attempt was taken off in a great gust never to be seen again... The third shot and the two little girls disappeared -I'm still there...").

Billboard.com's description: "An orchestral opening flourish segues into a languid rock-ballad rrangement, leaving ample room for Bono to deliver one of the more impassioned vocals heard on the album. The Edge punctuates the track with deliciously intricate lead guitar riffs, while Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen underscore the track with taut, insinuating rhythms that provide motion without overpowering the innate intimacy of the song."

Q magazine description: "Derives (as does Stuck In A Moment You Can't Get out Of and parts of Elevation) from first nine months of recording. Bono playes complex POV games while the band establish tidal ebb and flow, building on a wistful wobbly synth sample. A song about the year 2000, as if written in 2030. "

6. In A Little While (3:37)

(U2, Bono)
(Which was described by Bono as a gospel song.. "
Well, a big night went on before that and it sounds like it, but it works in that sense", explained Bono. The Irish Times calls it a "moody" track with "soulful" vocals.)

Billboard.com's description: "The club-savvy team of Richard Stannard and Julian Gallagher makes a post-production cameo on this notably low-key, pop-splashed gem. Bono wails with ample soul, while Stannard and Gallagher put their natural rhythmic intuition to fine use."

Q magazine description: "Guitar, bass and hip-hop drum loop lope languidly in modernized Al-Green style. Bono gives it 100 per cent vocal ache. 'It's a bit cheesy, a bit lounge,' says the singer. 'So I had to be soulful or it would have been ... funny.' Spice Girls' Biff Stannard credited with the purging of 'pastiche' elements."

7. Wild Honey (3:45)

(U2, Bono)

Billboard.com's description: "A pleasantly simple, acoustic-framed pop strummer on which Bono is at his most earthy and romantic."

Q magazine description: "Playful, acoustic guitar-driven, lovelorn cousin of Van Morrison circa Moondance. All temptations to add anything superflous overlooked, barring momentary operatic explosion from Bono. Bono's 'I'm singing like a bird' claim not without foundation."

8. Peace On Earth (4:46)

(U2, Bono)
(Features both Bono and the Edge on lead vocals)

Billboard.com's description: "This track is a firm reminder that few bands can get as intensely philosophical and political in their music as U2 does without coming off hammer-handed. Rather, this epic composition succeeds in examining the woes of the world within a structure that also includes a firm, insinuating melody and an infectious hook. A beautiful, heartfelt song that effectively references Sophocles' 'The Cure At Troy' as translated by Seamus Heaney."

Q magazine description: "Jesus is interrogated, not unbitterly about the Omagh bomb. Muted sleighride intro screams 'Christmas Number 1!', and primary-colour melody wouldn't look bad on Robbie Williams. 'Hear it every Christmas time / But hope and history won't rhyme' is killer line, adapted from Seamus Heaney."

9. When I Look At The World (4:15)

(U2, Bono, the Edge)

Billboard.com's description: "A perfect companion to 'Peace On Earth,' as the band launches into a rumbling, militaristic beat that is fondly reminiscent of its 1984 anthem 'Pride (In The Name of Love).' In the end, however, this tune doesn't have the same white-knuckled attack. Instead, this song (one of several on which the Edge contributes lyrics) simmers, relying more on a quietly guttural power than heady screams and proclamations."

Q magazine description: "A more urgent revisitation of The Ground Beneath Her Feet's melodic territory and the record's biggest 'grower.' Lyric about envying another's more organic way of dealing with life, embriodered with echo box-guitar, naive keyboard see-saws and occasional child-wailing guitar interjections"

10. New York (5:28)

(U2, Bono)

Billboard.com's description: " An undeniable love letter to one of the world's most famous cities, penned from the wide-eyed perspective of a European seeking the so-called promised land. Encased in a slow-building rock framework, 'New York' is a clever, often amusing ditty that tempers its ardor with a fair amount of realism."

Q magazine description: "Curious, under-a-blanket drum loop unveails conversational, man-loses-himself novella with apt Where The Streets Have No Name guitar quote. Poignant Sinatra anecdote (Bono: 'He picked up this napkin, said 'I remember when my eyes were that blue' and put it in
his pocket') missed off album version."

11. Grace (5:31)

(U2, Bono)

Billboard.com's description: "A soft, subtle closer that nicely counters the sonic blast coursing through
much of the set. Everything about this song is intimate and quietly emotional, as Bono cleverly intermingles vivid metaphoric images of a woman named Grace shouldering the weight of the world with sharp lyrical images of grace as a state of being."

Q magazine description: "The album's most Enofield moment with the soft guitar, distant synth and stroked bass counterpoint recalling, if anything, The Unforgettable Fire. 'Grace is the idea I get most excited about,' says Bono. 'More so than karma. If I have to live by karma then I'm coming back as a frog.'"

12. The Ground Beneath Her Feet

(U2, Salman Rushdie)
(UK bonus track/Originally appeared on "The Million Dollar Hotel" soundtrack)

Producers: Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois
Release Date: 2000, October 30/31 (Europe/U.S.)


Other Titles: These are song titles mentioned in interviews with the band and articles about the album. The band has said on several occassions that song titles have changed several times, so some of the following could be old names for songs that are on the album, or they may be extra tracks left off the album.

"Stir My Soul" was once reported as a possibility to lead off the album. It has undergone several transformations, including a name change (was titled "Jubilee"). Described as "delicate and beautiful, driven by hypnotic piano motif."

"Home (The Bird Has Flown)" which The Edge described as a "standout, very uplifting and beautiful." Rolling Stone magazine says it is "the closest they have come in years to their surging late '80s sound."

"Out of jokes, out of smokes, out of punches and on the ropes
On the canvas just inches from where you used to stand
Out of fear, out of rage..."

"Bulldozer" which Larry has said to be his personal favorite thus far.

"Sun the Moon and the Stars" which has been called a summer song. The "Discotheque" HowieB HairyB Mix has a short line where Bono sings a chorus of "heaven, heaven, you want heaven, the sun, moon, and the stars", a similarity which could mean "The Sun, Moon, And The Stars" was written in 1998; Adam Clayton has said the sessions for the new album started shortly after the Pop Mart Tour had ended.

"Origin Of Species"

"Tough" which was inspired by Bono's father.